BAGUIO CITY – The City Council approved on first reading a proposed ordinance providing for the rules of undertaking of the Public Order and Safety Division (POSD) in the implementation of the city’s anti-peddling ordinance.
The ordinance authored by Vice Mayor Edison R. Bilog stated it will be a policy of the local government to promote public order, ensure public safety and further spur the city’s economic development through the establishment of rules to be undertaken by the POSD in the implementation of the city’s anti-peddling ordinance that was crafted to abate the proliferation of ambulant vendors in public places in the city.
Among the purposes of the proposed measure include the creation and establishment of a set of rules by which the anti-peddling enforcers of the POSD shall undertake in the conduct of its operations; guide the POSD personnel and other concerned agencies in the performance of their duties and responsibilities, specifically to maintain order and safety within the city and public market, the central business district and in areas where they are employed, and to secure the general public and maintain public order in conjunction with the police and other tasked enforcement offices.
Under the proposed ordinance, the general rules mandate the POSD enforcers to wear their uniform and identification cards while on duty, exhaust apt peaceful means of persuading or inducing illegal vendors to leave the premises where selling is prohibited, and if the vendors refuse to cause the voluntary surrender of their goods which are subject for confiscation during the initial resistance, confiscate goods, products, wares as may be necessary but only after the voluntary surrender of the violator was unsuccessful, always exercise maximum restraint when talking or confronted by violators, attempt to remain calm, temperate and objective even during verbal assaults done against them and take the necessary precautions when circumstances arise that would already warrant the existences of defence of self, such as when weapons are already used to or when physical attack already occurs, endeavour to exhaust all possible means to pacify the violators involved and acquire assistance from the Baguio City Police Office (BCPO) in the arrest and apprehension of those found to be in the possession of weapons, thus, prohibited from exacerbating the situation, attempt to engage the violators in a verbal tussle or heated arguments to avoid any escalation of conflicts between the parties and observe due courtesy and proper respect as befitting public servants.
The ordinance tasked the POSD under the City Mayor’s Office shall ensure the implementation or enforcement of the pertinent provisions of the measure.
Further, the POSD shall inform and conduct proper training for its new enforcers about the rules of undertaking prior to allowing them to join the anti-peddling operations.
The ordinance mandated the POSD, the City Legal Office, the Baguio City Market Authority (BCMA), the Market Division Office under the City Treasury Office, and the BCPO shall prepare the implementing rules and regulations for the measure and submit the same to the City Mayor and to the local legislative body for approval.
The ordinance also tasked the City Public Information Office and the Public Information Officer of the local legislative body shall inform the public on the pertinent provisions of the measure crafted for the purpose.
By Dexter A. See